The Myth of “Fat” and “Skinny” Microbes

The problem of excess weight is one of the most important problems of our era.

And one of the most ” massive – – almost half of the population in the so-called prosperous countries suffers from obesity. In some places, not half, but two-thirds.

Gaining weight is easy. It does not need to apply absolutely no effort. The weight is typed by itself, invisibly, insidiously and constantly shrinking clothes alluding to the fact that the waist is something wrong…

But to lose weight is very difficult. Sometimes it’s impossible. A person goes to water and apples, well, maybe a couple of times a day with gingerbread, cookies or cake for tea, and the weight does not want to decrease. Evil scales daily show all the same figure with which the heroic feat of weight loss began.

People used to go crazy not being able to figure out where they were making a mistake. Gingerbread and cookies are not taken into account, because the fool knows that tea is not food, therefore, everything related to tea drinking is automatically excluded from the diet. But not so long ago scientists, not the mythical British, which decided to “throw” all pseudoscientific, and others, have discovered that our weight (Yes, and our weight too!) controlled by microbes living in our intestines.

By the nature of the impact on weight microorganisms are divided into” skinny “and”thick”. “Skinny” microbes take away from us, that is, from the food we eat part of the calories for their personal needs. A good thing these little friends of man do-protect us from obesity. But the” fat ” microbes are the real villains. They produce nutrients that are absorbed by our body, that is, they add us completely unnecessary calories. A man sits for weeks on apples and water (cakes and other “tea” doesn’t count, we already talked about this!), and these invisible pests, otherwise they can not be called, secretly fed it with fats, proteins and carbohydrates of their own production. Aren’t they reptiles? As there is reptiles, the most real.

However, man is (at least nominally) the king of nature because he knows how to adapt everything for his own good. If we gain weight with “fat” germs, then why don’t we lose it with “skinny.” Just think about it-instead of exhausting yourself with hunger and exercise, it is enough to slightly change the balance of intestinal microflora and you can lose weight without hardship and generally any inconvenience. Some people have intestinal worms that consume calories from food for this purpose, but there’s still a difference between an intestinal parasite and an intestinal microflora, right? Again, the parasite sooner or later will have to get rid of, and intestinal microflora – it’s forever. Just imagine how good it is not to limit yourself in food and keep the” aspen ” waist! Previously, such lucky people said: “they have an intense metabolism”, and now we know that it is not in metabolism, but in microbes.

In germs!

If you find out how easy it was to open this scientific “casket”, you will be surprised-well, why it was not done before, for example half a century ago? Yes, because then no one seriously thought about the impact of microbes-symbionts on our body. Scientists symbionts do not engage, they were only interested in pathogens.

Started this scientific story is not with microorganisms, and people. People-twins. Scientists generally like to study twins and break their brilliant heads over why with a similar genetic development program twins sometimes grow completely different from each other.

For example, one twin is thin, and the other obese second degree, that is a good thirty pounds of excess weight. Why and why? If a thin twin works as a swimming coach or, say, aerobics, and sits in the office all day long, then it seems to be all clear – it’s all about physical activity. If a thin twin prefers to eat vegetables and herbs, and a full – hamburgers, pizzas and spaghetti, the difference in weight can be explained by the nature of the food. But if both of them work in offices, live in the same conditions and eat about the same, then what could be the reason for such a pronounced difference between them? Thirty kilograms of live weight is not a joke! Almost two poods, if you count in the old manner.

“And not in the intestinal microflora of the matter?”- scientists thought after all other reasons were considered and rejected.

The most important thing in science is not to knock out a research grant, but to be able to put the question correctly. That’s what scientists say – whoever wants to hear the right answers has to ask the right questions.

To participate in the experiments, several pairs of twins were selected, significantly differing in weight with almost complete similarity of lifestyle. Microbiota from each of the participants transplanted experimental mice. Mice, of course, were selected similar in age and size, kept in the same conditions and fed the same.

The results were stunning. Mice that received microflora full the twins suddenly started to gain weight, despite the fact that the composition of their diet was no different from a diet is not Tolstaya mice receiving the lean microbiota of twins. Scientists have suggested that the metabolism and energy of the body depends on the composition of its intestinal microflora. Further experiments confirmed this guess.

Just think – our intestinal microflora controls our metabolism, all biological processes occurring in our body! There is an ancient Roman wisdom: “He who feeds, controls.” As applied to our circumstances, it can be paraphrased as follows:”Who controls the metabolism, he controls the body.”

Delving deeper into the topic, scientists have found that we can still resist microbial dictates, can change the ratio of our intestinal microflora in the direction we need, with the help of our diet. If the diet is dominated by high-calorie food-fat and sweet, the intestine will be dominated by “thick” microbes that prefer all high-calorie. If the diet is a lot of fiber, but little fat and sugar, the intestine is dominated by “skinny” microbes, which such food to their liking. It’s just like people, isn’t it? Full love high-calorie, bad calorie.

And microorganisms can affect the absorption of various nutrients, slowing it down or stimulating. If there are microbes in your gut that stimulate fat absorption, you are likely to be overweight even if your calorie intake is fully consistent with your energy costs. And, accordingly, on the contrary – microorganisms that inhibit the absorption of nutrients, will help you stay slim even when overeating.

Do you know why people suffering from infectious diseases and receiving antibiotics lose weight in the first place? Due to changes in the composition of the intestinal microflora in the “skinny” side. “Thick “microorganisms are less resistant than “skinny”, and therefore antibiotics destroy them in the first place. There is even such an experimental (still experimental) method of weight loss as weight loss with antibiotics.

All goes to the fact that the science of dietetics, engaged in the study of nutrition, in the near future will turn into microbiological dietetics or dietary Microbiology. Not in the name of the matter, but in the fact that all nutrition issues should be considered in close connection with the intestinal microflora.

Let us remember in passing that microbes are able to encourage us to choose a certain food that they like, and to turn away from the one that they do not like, by producing certain substances that are absorbed from the lumen of the intestine into the blood and delivered to the brain. However, we’ll talk about this in the eleventh Chapter, until we have the conversation is only about “thick” and “thin” microbes. Although microbes that encourage us to eat more oil (no matter what-vegetable or butter) or fat can be attributed to the”thick”. And those who force to lean on cabbage and cucumbers, – to “skinny”.

Many restaurants indicate in the menu not only the composition and price of dishes, but also their calorie content. In the near future, there will indicate and what kind of microorganisms contributes to the growth of this dish. And in addition to sommeliers and other consultants on drinks and food, the number of which is growing day by day, in restaurants there will be consultants-microbiologists who will advise customers on the choice of dishes, taking into account the needs of their (client) intestinal microflora.

I came to the restaurant, sat down at a table, showed the consultant the latest analysis of intestinal microflora and listen to the recommendation:

– Due to the small excess in the number of clostridia, I would not recommend you “Bouquet of Provence”, “Chablis room eighteen” and roast grouse and all the dishes, which include asparagus and artichokes. It is better to take the oysters, and to them “the widow’s Tear Kiko”. And certainly Camembert for dessert!

Beauty! Lepota! Really cute! A celebration of the soul!


Was touched?

Now, please take a fork and remove from your ears all the noodles that the insidious author of this book just hung on them. And please forgive the author. He did it with the best of intentions. Some myths are better exposed in a “contrasting” way – first immerse the reader in this myth, as in a bathroom filled with warm fragrant water, and then pour him, softened and blissful, a bucket of ice water on his head. After this procedure, the information is remembered much better.

(The fork is not removed, you still need it.)

Conditional “buckets”, i.e. points in our exposure, will several.

  1. Have you ever thought about what will happen if you pour water into a sieve, and try to sift flour with a pan?

Of course, nothing good will come of it. The water will leak through the sieve, and the flour will remain unseeded.

And now let’s remember that where is absorbed in our body. On anatomy lessons at school, it was really not all remember.

We won’t go into anatomy. Suffice it to recall that the vast majority of nutrients (more than 95 %) are absorbed in the small intestine. In Tolstoy actively absorbed water and fiber cleavage products, as well as some other difficult to digest substances that serve as food for microorganisms living there. This time.

Also, let’s remember that most of our intestinal microflora is concentrated in the colon. That’s two.

Now we add the first and the second and try to explain how microorganisms living in the colon can affect the absorption in the small intestine, which is located above the colon? “Higher” in the sense that food masses move from the small intestine to the large, and not Vice versa. If on the contrary, it could still be said that the substances released by microorganisms pass from one gut to another along with food masses and there, in a new place, affect the absorption of substances.

What the inhabitants of the colon can do, that is, what they can affect the absorption of water, is the absorption of water. That is why almost all violations of the natural balance of microflora are accompanied by liquid stool. Suffering from imbalance of the cells of the colon mucosa begin to suck water worse, and even completely stop doing it.

  1. Yes, all the inhabitants of our intestines in the process of their life produce the necessary proteins, fats and carbohydrates. The key words are “necessary”. Necessary for cell construction and operation.

Can you imagine what exactly is the meaning of metabolism (about energy we, for the sake of simplicity, will not constantly mention)? To obtain nutrients necessary for life energy and matter-“materials” from which to synthesize the desired organism. Split nutrients-received some energy and “building materials – – spent part of the energy and “building materials” to synthesize the substances we need, and the other part – to ensure the processes of life. So, roughly speaking, everything happens with us, animal organisms. Plants that are able to use the energy of solar radiation, the exchange is somewhat different, but we are not talking about plants, and about us and our intestinal symbionts.

All living organisms are designed to throw into the surrounding space as little as possible valuable, that can be used as a source of energy or building material for their own organic substances. We do not make an exception to this rule. What are we bringing out? Water, carbon dioxide, urea, what we can not digest, and the “corpses” of dead microorganisms living (that is, lived) in our intestines.

Microorganisms are as “miserly” as we are, if not worse. They emit into the environment, that is, into the large intestine, where they mainly live, water, the simplest gases (that’s the cause of flatulence caused by the use of large amounts of fiber), and some other products. If we are lucky, these products may be useful for our body vitamins that can be absorbed in the colon. Sometimes nature just makes fun of us. For example, very necessary for our body vitamin B12, produced by some inhabitants of the colon, can be absorbed only in the small intestine. Life cannot be turned back, and it is equally impossible to move the food masses in the opposite direction, so that the valuable vitamin is excreted from the body with feces, that is, wasted. That’s the sadness, grief.

Vitamins, pay attention. Organic substances having a relatively simple structure and participating in metabolic reactions as catalysts [17]. Vitamins are not a source of energy for the body (that is, do not have calories), and are not structural components of substances synthesized in the body (that is, are not “building material”).

You can imagine that among our microflora, and indeed-in nature, there are “altruists” who will process cellulose, the main component of coarse plant fibers, in fats and sucrose and give these valuable nutritious products to us, in other words – to allocate in the lumen of the intestine. You can imagine anything, right down to the orange sky and flying hippos. But in real life, and in our intestines including such “altruistic” does not exist. In real life, there are only plants that can produce organic substances-proteins, fats and carbohydrates from the simplest substances using solar energy, but some microorganisms are able to do the same, due to the energy of chemical oxidation reactions (the first process is called “photosynthesis”, and the second – “chemosynthesis”). But neither plants nor chemosynthetic bacteria live in our intestines. In short, altruism has no place in the gut.

And even if there were altruists living in our colon, trying to” feed ” us with fats, proteins and carbohydrates, we would not have any sense, because all these substances in the colon are not digested (not broken down) and are not absorbed. There are no corresponding enzymes, no corresponding cells of the intestinal mucosa. Otherwise, bacteria in the colon did not live, because they can exist only in the distance from digestive enzymes. Enzymes are like a molecule of protein, fat, or carbohydrate, like the cell membrane of a bacterium formed from these substances. Eat, that is, digest, and not choke. Therefore, where bacteria live, there is no” full “digestion and accompanying” full-scale ” absorption of nutrients. Conversely, where these processes are present, bacteria do not survive, cannot survive.

  1. The law of conservation of energy, which in our time is increasingly called not “law” and “principle” in order to emphasize its “community”, everyone remembers? When applied to intestinal microflora, it may sound like this: “out of nowhere, calories will not come, our symbiont microbes feed on what we ate.” Therefore, if, for example, the caloric content of your daily diet is two and a half thousand calories, no microorganisms-symbionts will not be able to increase it to three thousand by producing caloric substances. This is not a biological problem (biology we discussed in the first and second paragraphs), and purely mathematical. It is possible to put all the conscious life on that to prove fidelity of equality 2500 = 3000, but the result won’t be reached as it contradicts scientific bases.

But back to biology. Give us calories intestinal microorganisms can not, it is clear. But they can also take away some of the calories contained in the food!

Yes they can. And taken away. Otherwise they will all starve.

Therefore, they can be considered as a factor contributing to weight loss?

Conditionally, that is theoretically, it is possible. But really, almost doesn’t make sense. And here’s why. The body weight of the average adult is between seventy and seventy-five kilograms, and the total weight of his intestinal microflora is about two and a half kilograms. In terms of percentages-about three and a half percent of body weight. Consequently, the microflora consumes the calories about the same. “Approximately”, but in fact significantly less, because the energy costs of a multicellular organism are much higher than the costs of an equal number of unicellular organisms. It is enough to imagine at least how much energy we spend on movement, including the work of the heart and lungs… So, the number of calories taken from us by our intestinal microflora, it’s like a drop in the sea. It is impossible to achieve any significant weight loss with the help of intestinal microflora (changing its composition or promoting its growth). Again, it is very difficult to influence the composition of the intestinal microflora, because the balance created by nature has the ability to independently recover from violations. It is possible, of course, to try to severely disrupt this balance, but such an attempt will inevitably lead to medical problems.

So where did they come from, these “fat” and “skinny” germs? Who invented them and why? And did the scientists have to bother with them, if it is clear that all this is nonsense?

Well, first of all, scientists (real scientists) are not engaged in nonsense. Unlike journalists, which do not feed bread, only the material for the next sensation throw. Scientists can investigate one thing, and journalists will tell about another, Yes so will tell that you will not want to believe, and you will believe. Scientists not hurry with conclusions. They’ll measure seventy-seven times before they cut it off, and then they’ll measure it seventy-seven times, and then they’ll draw conclusions. Journalists insights made instantly: “Scientists have proven that our weight determines the microbes living in our gut!»; “Our germs are thick and skinny!”; “If you want to lose weight-negotiate with your bacteria!”And so on…

And after journalists “sensation” begin to exploit charlatans. Coming soon services for the correction of the intestinal microflora telepathic methods of the conspiracy “against microbial spoilage”, sessions, psychic alterations of intestinal energy and, of course, dietary supplements containing “unique culture” of microorganisms, contributing to weight loss. However, why the “coming soon”? It is possible that all of the above already exists. First step is the hardest…

PostScript. In order to reduce weight, you need to give the body with food fewer calories than consumed in the process of life. Then the body will be forced to use internal reserves-fat reserves to compensate for the missing amount of energy. This is the only real way to lose weight.

All the rest is nonsense and vain vanity.

(Sorry to the author if he is someone these words upset, but the truth is sometimes bitter and nothing is impossible to do.)

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